Thanks for your very interesting post. I will try to reply on the various elements as good as I can but I do admit that I feel you to know your classics a bit better then I do, hehehe.
How "further development" leads to a "spiritual devolution" to me is simply a matter of focus. Basically when "asking why a bit to much" instead of accepting things to be as they are, one slowly but steadily sinks into the material world. This can not happen while at the same time having a conscious life among the stars so to speak.
Not that I am really into Christian mysticism, but sometimes I just can’t help myself (lol). Some stories in the bible have a quality, to me that is, I simply do not see told by the general public. For instance, the paradise lost story. Adam and Eve, freshly created by God, made one “mistake”, so both out of the paradise. Usually the female curiosity/sexuality is blamed and males are allowed for aeons to rub that in. I feel very uncomfortable with that explanation. If, however, I leave this explanation behind, and try to link this story with higher grounds some marvellous statements can be made. This needs redefining of the symbols used.
Firstly both Adam and Eve can be seen as one soul, two sides of the same coin, so let’s refer to them as being one entity, one symbol of soul named AdamEve. AdamEve is placed in the material world. This is a significant point although I still find it difficult to fully understand what deeper meaning can be found in its descent into the material world. It holds the ultimate answer why we are here. Maybe it is because down here we can do things even God can't do.
Secondly, the paradise itself. Some see this as a sort of super camping site where everything is OK. I would like to propose that the paradise is a symbol of an enlightened, all transcended spiritual awareness belonging to the place were AdamEve originally came from.
Thirdly the snake. Most people say the snake represents the devil who seduces Eve. I would like to suggest that the snake, rubbing its belly in the soil of the Earth, symbolises the material world. So what the paradise lost story tells us is the descent of human souls into the material world. This material world has some attributes that are explained in the story.
The fourth symbol is the tree of knowledge over good and bad. This is a form of knowledge that is related to the material world and the spiritual planes closely related to the material world. Remember, Adam and Eve came from a place where this difference does not exist. Using the symbol of the snake (material world) AdamEve is “told” that there is a difference between good and bad. This is like some sort of de - enlightenment one has to suffer for stepping in to the material world.
After this “knowledge” turned in to reality (power of thought?), the paradise state of being can’t exist anymore, so AdamEve is forced out of the paradise state. The becoming aware of nudity holds the symbol of the Ego being created.
Some may also remember that when AdamEve was expelled from the paradise, cherubs with flaming swords were placed in front of the doors to eternal life. This is the second set back of being in the material world we have to endure, namely the lack of understanding our eternal existence.
So, my idea is that the paradise lost story is one of immense wisdom for those who see through the lines and through centuries of non spiritual explanation of this story.
To conclude on this paradise lost story I like to add that there is a timeline needed to explain all these events separately. In real life these event happen all at the same time as one integral step.
You said: "Some might speculate that it was the very act of writing them down that marked the downward spiral to spiritual devolution."
Well, I can only say brilliant thought! When I read that I suddenly realised that writing down at least did accelerate the devolution process. So it accomplished the opposite of what was needed. Amazing!
Your examples of actual references to star based knowledge is very good but I am not really qualified to dish out the other 1000 examples. Maybe some attending this board can add their knowledge to this.
Here you can find some stuff, but there must be more. Also the John Matthews books shed some light.
To finish my reply to you, could you please expand a bit on your mixed bag remark?